According to a release from the town of Newington, on December 27, 2017, a resident reported a diesel fuel odor. After an investigation, the source of the fuel leak was found to be in an underground vault at the Board of Education bus garage on Garfield Street.
The vault contained shut off valves that stopped the flow of fuel from the adjacent above ground tank to a remote dispensing pump via underground delivery lines.
Once the source was found, officials stopped the flow of the fuel and environmental remediation specialists were then called to the scene. It was discovered that the release of diesel was the result of a significant breach to an underground fuel delivery system and that about 18,000 gallons of fuel was leaked.
Newington officials say that a valve had deteriorated and failed. While the system was installed approximately 12 years ago to include multiple leak prevention technologies, all of them failed.
There is no further threat of additional contamination because the leak was contained but there are still pockets of diesel fuel within the waterways that may gradually appear on the surface.
Moreover, officials say that since the fuel migrated under the bus garage, the garage may need razing to excavate the contaminated soil. To date, in excess of 6,000 tons of soil have been removed.
Additionally, the final cost of remediation hasn’t been determined but the Town Council has voted to allocate $5 million in emergency funding by seeking short-term financing.
The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection continues to remain on scene.